Most of the dogs eat foods which are specifically made for the species. When you give your pet commercially manufactured dry or moist food, you think that it is best for his health. But consuming excess of commercially-processed foods rich in calories can cause various health problems including arthritis, diabetes, obesity, cancer, and periodontal disease.
There have been cases where consumption of wheat gluten contaminated with melamine has resulted in kidney failure in dogs and cats.
Wheat Gluten – It is a byproduct of grain that works as an alternative to whole grain carbs and meat-based protein. It is cheaper compared to other forms of proteins.
Melamine – It is a constituent in plastic used for increasing protein and nitrogen levels.
Some commercial pet food manufacturers use such ingredients to generate more profits. Similarly, the chicken jerky treats, originating in China have also been known for their toxic effects. However, these cases don’t mean that all commercially produced pet food is bad.
Balanced & Complete Nutrition
Certain commercially produced pet foods are nutritionally balanced and complete for different age groups. Such foods give you the assurance that your dog will get the perfect combination of nutrients including carbs, proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals, and fibers to meet their specific nutritional needs.
Check the Ingredients List & Recommended Guidelines
All commercially produced pet foods are regulated by the FDA. Manufacturers are required to print the list of ingredients and the recommended guidelines. The label will also carry information about daily amount of food to be consumed based on your dog’s weight. So it is important to check the label and ensure that your pet is getting the right ingredients in the right way.
Feed-grade Foods Processed at High Temperatures
All the commercially produced dog food is made from feed-grade ingredients rather than human-grade ingredients. These ingredients have low quality. Besides, pet foods also have room for toxins like mycotoxins, which can be present in human-grade foods only in tiny quantities. Meat & bone based pet foods can have parts from dead animals sourced from animal shelters, farms, feedlots, and similar centers. They can also contain grease, fats, and waste materials from restaurants.
Pentobarbital is a contaminant of concern which can be found in such dead animals. It is used in the anesthesia used for animals. The food can also contain other ingredients which may be less nutritious than you think. For example, canned and dry foods are cooked at extremely high temperatures to exterminate bacteria. However, the heat will also kill good enzymes and proteins. Overall, such measures reduce the quantity and quality of nutrients in your dog’s foods.
Concern for Preservatives
Ethoxyquin, Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHT), and a number of other chemical preservatives are of concern as they are used in dog foods. Some of these chemicals are proven to be reproductive toxicants and carcinogens. BHT is also considered to be a carcinogen and a cause behind liver and kidney damage.
Ethoxyquin is also a preservative found in dog foods which is barred from use in human-grade foods. It is considered to be harmful when ingested or when it comes in contact with skin. A point of concern is that it may not even be displayed on the label. So it is recommended to choose pet foods free from preservatives but contain only essential vitamins which are safer.